Tuesday, December 30, 2014

It was a busy few days.....

I set up the scope Sunday morning and Sunday night out at the Witte Observatory.  Then Monday evening the skies were clear so I could not resist trying to get a photo of Comet Lovejoy.

Comet Lovejoy 20" 800 ISO
 Comet Lovejoy 20" 3200 ISO
 M42 (again) 10" 3200 ISO
 M42 (again) 30" 3200 ISO
 M66 30" 3200 ISO
  M66 30" 12800 ISO
 M81 10" 12800 IOS
  M81 20" 12800 IOS
 M82 30" ISO 800
 M82 30" ISO 3200

Then there's everybody's favorite.... the Moon!


Miscellaneous pics taken at the observatory :-)





Time to sleep..... lol =)


Friday, December 26, 2014

GREAT to view the Sun on Christmas! =)

Along with my trusty cat, Church, I enjoyed viewing the Sun Christmas afternoon =)




















There were a few sunspots ;)

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Pics from December 17th

So I'm still not using the autoguider, nor are any of these pics stacked.... but I'm getting better at polar alignment using the scope in the mount AND this time I used a program I made in Backyard EOS to step through taking a set of pictures at various exposures / ISO's - 2 photos at each setting.  Pretty darn slick.....   Use Starsense to step up the scope, computer to Goto object, focus (I only did this once?), let Backyard EOS take a set of shots, then go on to next object.  =)

Still thinking these pics will get better.  In addition to improved tracking and stacking, I still have on my wish list a new focuser ;)

For the "scrap book."

M31 and friends =) (the low-hanging fruit of celestial objects <3)


30 seconds; 6400 ISO

 30 seconds; 6400 ISO

M76 (Little Dumbell.... see if you can spot it!)


20 seconds; 3200 ISO

 20 seconds; 12800 ISO

 30 seconds; 3200 ISO

M110 (and M31 = picture hog ;)

10 seconds; 3200 ISO

 20 seconds; 3200 ISO

20 seconds; 12800 ISO

30 seconds; 3200 ISO 
I accidentally bumped the mount but thought it was kind of a cool effect... 

NGC663 ~ Open Cluster in Cassiopeia

10 seconds; 3200 ISO

20 seconds; 800 ISO

20 seconds; 3200 ISO 

 30 seconds; 800 ISO
Not sure why the aspect is suddenly different for this photo....




Saturday, December 13, 2014

New Camera Lenses =)

I've been reading about how using "fast" camera lenses is the route to go with capturing star photos, so for my birthday we bought two new lenses for our Cannon Rebel t5i:  a Rokinon 16 mm F2.0 for wide angle and a Opteka 85 mm F1.8 for a bit of zooming.  Was able to play around with them for the first time last night ;)  I photographed from our front porch here in town.  Thinking now I want to try darker skies....  VERY Fun!

Orion and Taurus using the 16 mm F2.0





M42 and M45 using the 85 mm F1.8





A plane passing through while photographing =)




I forgot to include a couple of star trail photos I took of Orion and Taurus <3.  

~ 160 seconds exposure


~ 300 seconds exposure


~ 300 seconds exposure annotated =)




Cropped and close up of a bit of Taurus including the Pleiades:









A Couple of Misc Pics

It has been soooooo cloudy here it seems.  Here are a couple of photos I didn't post yet:

Set of stars at the "top" of Orion with normal tracking and then with the mount turned off taken at the end of the session November 29:




Then here's my first photo of M1, Crab Nebula ~ unstacked taken December 11.  Not nearly as cool as I was hoping - but there's room for progress, eh?



About Me

My photo

I've lived in southeastern Iowa all of my life, now with my wonderful family ~ husband and 3 children. 

I've been teaching science now at the local community college for over 10 year now.  I teach both in the class room and online settings.  I have a passion for ALL PHYSICAL SCIENCE! 

Sometimes I both drift off to sleep and wake up thinking of science.  Science ROCKS ~ but even more so the Creator whose imagination thought up this wonderful universe we call home ROCKS EVEN MORE!  lol